The scene: Runners on first and second after Tigers starter Max Scherzer walks both Xander Bogaerts and Jacoby Ellsbury to start the bottom of the third inning. Shane Victorino poorly attempts to advance both runners with a sacrifice bunt, popping up to a diving Scherzer in front of home plate. Dustin Pedroia then crushes a ball down the left field line, an obvious home run if it can stay to the right of the pole. It hooks just to the left and is ruled foul.
The ruling was challenged by Red Sox manager John Farrell, so the umpires left the field to review the play. After they emerged, they stuck to their original ruling of a foul ball. When play resumed, Pedroia grounded into an inning-ending 5-3 double play. The game remains scoreless at 0-0.
While the FOX broadcast was analyzing the review situation, they showed a replay of Scherzer reacting to the ball as it hung in the air. You’ll enjoy this .gif:
The Braves have signed reliever Blaine Boyer to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training, MLB.com’s Mark Bowman reports. Bowman adds that the right-hander has a “good chance” to make the Braves’ bullpen out of spring training.
Boyer, 35, spent the past season with the Brewers, finishing with a 3.95 ERA and a 26/17 K/BB ratio in 66 innings.
Boyer, of course, started his professional baseball career with the Braves as they selected him in the third round of the 2000 draft. Since the Braves traded him in 2009, Boyer has pitched for the Cardinals, Diamondbacks, Mets, Padres, and Twins along with the Brewers.
Update (6:48 PM EST): Topkin reports the contract will be of the major league variety.
Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that the Rays and free agent reliever Shawn Tolleson are close to finalizing a contract.
Tolleson, who turns 29 years old on Thursday, had an ugly 2016 season, finishing with a 7.68 ERA and a 29/10 K/BB ratio in 36 1/3 innings. He was one of the Rangers’ best relievers in the two seasons prior to that, however, which included saving 35 games in 2015.